Watering in the Winter

February 27, 2022

Some people might think livestock need access to (unfrozen) water 24/7, and therefore one must use some sort of heater to keep the water thawed. While animals can get along just fine with being watered even just once a day when it's cold out (or less if they're grazing through snow), if you prefer to have liquid available all day (or night), there are other options besides a heat source to consider. An important principle to remember is moving water has a lot harder time freezing. So if the water is continuously flowing, your hose won't freeze and you don't have to unplug it and drain it each day!  When it got down to near zero we went ahead and unplugged the hose for the night just to be on the safe side. The trick is trying to match the flow rate with the drinking rate, to satisfy the animals and not let it overflow the tank.

Sometimes I don't always get my words to come out right...despite what it sounded like, the buried water lines aren't just for the winter, we use them all year around ;)

Also, here's a little bonus video I featured in the January Moosletter. While waiting for the water to fill, I entertained Silas by throwing a stick for him to fetch. He entertained the cows by running back and forth in front of them. The front row of heads followed him every time he ran back and forth!

Kate Cobb

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